Father of Oxford shooting suspect speaks out - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Father of Oxford shooting suspect speaks out

By Janice Broach - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

OXFORD, MS WMC-TV) - Billy Autry, the father of the suspect that led Oxford Mississippi police in a deadly standoff, talked to Action News 5's Janice Broach about the terrifying afternoon he experienced while hiding in the attic fearing for his life.

Currently, Billy and his family are living in an apartment because the horror of last Friday is still just too raw to return to the residence where the shooting occured.

Autry revealed his 24-year-old son Bilethon struggles with mental problems.

"Now he will get help, but look what has happened...look what has happened," he said.

Billy said his son is bipolar and experiences mental problems as well as showing violent tendencies in the past.

The distraught father said his son was released just last Wednesday from a mental hospital. Bilethon was not allowed to live with his family but he stopped by on Friday to pick up his medicine.

Billy Autry said his older son, Billy Ray Hodges, was in town visiting from Wisconsin.

"When I came downstairs Bilethon was there," he said.

Everything seemed fine until Bilethon went outside.

"A minute later Charlie said he has a gun," Autry said.

Autry then secured all the doors in the house locking Bilethon outside of the home in an attempt to protect himself, Charlie, and the housekeeper while he called the police.

The police arrived shortly after with snipers. "At that time Bilethon broke the glass out of the patio doors. We all ran," he said.

Autry says he then ran upstairs through his bedroom and closet to hide in the attic. Charlie and the housekeeper ran to his daughter's bedroom to hide. Shortly after Billy heard a gun shot Bilethon came into the attic where he was hiding.

"I was lying on the floor by the clothes," he said, but Bilethon didn't see him. "I stayed there for 3 hours."

Autry says once Bilethon left the attic he then dialed 9-1-1 while hiding.

"They said, 'Where are you? Don't move. Stay there because he is still in the house with a gun,'" Billy recalled.

Charlie Ray Hodges died inside the house from gunshot wounds. He had planned to leave about 15 minutes prior to when tragic events began.

About 30 minutes later, officers arrested Bilethon and took him into custody.

Billy Autry said he did not want the mental hospital to release his son. He is not sure when he will visit Bilethon, who is now in jail behind bars.

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